C&J Clark Limited, owners of the Clarks brand, a privately held footwear business, was founded in 1985 in Street, Somerset (UK), by the Clark family. Still based in Street, the Clarks Group designs, develops and sells a wide range of footwear and accessories for men, women and children. The brand is renowned for its quality and style along with comfort. The Clarks Group has built on its success as the leading shoe company in the UK to become a £1.5 billion global business operating retail, wholesale, franchise and online channels in over 100 markets worldwide. In conversation with IMAGES Retail, Business Head, Clarks India, Sanjay Pandey unveils the company’s plans for Indian market.
Reach In Terms Of The Total Number Of Outlets And Cities:
We currently have 60 retail outlets and are the first global brand in our segment to be present in over 35 cities. This includes both company-owned and franchise stores. Our franchise store count is 32 and we look forward to expanding our franchise partnerships with partners who share the same goal and passion as ours. Apart from this we are also present in leading shop-in-shops across the country.
Company’s Philosophy and TG:
We are positioned as the world’s leading casual shoe brand that is of the moment, unconstrained by fashion, with an individual look and feel. We are a classic, stylish, innovative brand and our shoes ensure great fit, quality, value and performance.
Our target consumers are confident, free-spirited individuals in the age group of 25 to 50 years. Their lifestyle represents contemporary values who have a natural taste for elegant, understated looks with timeless potential.
Product Range and Price Point:
We have a range of formal shoes for men in classic black and brown that complement the festive look. For women, the collection ranges from flats, block heels and pointed heels in a range of colours that are effortlessly stylish and chic. We also have an accessories line with stylish bags for both men and women. Our product price points range from Rs 3,999 to Rs 11,999.
As a strategy, we see our brand present in all malls and high-street locations that go well with our brand image. Our next level of business expansion would mean strengthening our retail footprint in Tier III cities and creating an equally strong line of stores in Tier II locations.
We are not a big believer of traditional loyalty programmes where points are accumulated and redeemed. We extend significant rewards on repeat purchase and leverage word of mouth by keeping the reward open for referrals through our loyalty program, Clarks Connect.
Importance of Marketing:
This season, we have a very focused and robust marketing campaign targeting our customers. Our brand campaign for the season is built for creating an overall consumer connect that aims at elevating the brand experience. The entire campaign is designed in a coherent layered format that helps to progress from driving a customer from the awareness to consideration to conversion phase.
We are creating product franchises for the long term such as Nature, Trigenic and Desert Boot. The idea of building these product franchises is for a product to eventually evolve into a portfolio of brands that can command better shelf space.
Interesting Concepts and Innovations:
Premium windows have been curated for better brand representation. We have also introduced tablet selling in stores in order to appease the modern customer. In addition to this, i-Pad measurement devices are now used in stores to ensure kids get the best fit.
Future Plans and Targets:
With a growing strong product line-up, we are confident that we will be able to attract new consumers and engage effectively with our existing loyal consumer base. We are hopeful that this coupled with the introduction of GST, our plans of growing our footprint will have a positive impact on our business.
Our online platform is built to reach out to a larger audience who can have access to our products. The website is designed to give consumers an elevated brand experience. However, we would like to work towards introducing online exclusive range of Clarks products for our consumers on this platform.
Our brand website is a representation of our retail shop assortment and has helped established the brand goal. We are also running a trial of tablet selling in key stores which helps in building the bridge between online and offline channels.
Leveraging Social Media:
Social media is a big part of our customer outreach and community building. The channel lends itself beautifully to telling our brand story while gathering feedback and addressing concerns.
C&J Clark Limited, owners of the Clarks brand, the privately held footwear business, was founded in Street, Somerset in the UK by the Clark family in 1825. The Clarks brand is renowned worldwide for quality and style with comfort. The Clarks Group has built on its success as the leading shoe company in the UK to become a £1.5 billion global business operating retail, wholesale, franchise and online channels in over 100 markets worldwide.
Clark’s story began almost 200 years ago when Cyrus and James Clark made a slipper from sheepskin off-cuts. At the time it was groundbreaking; a combination of invention and craftsmanship that’s remained at the heart of what they do. And whilst now, as always, every pair of their shoes begins with a last carved by hand from a single block of hornbeam, advanced construction techniques, technologies and contemporary materials helps them in delivering perfection tailor-made for the modern world.
CREATING ICONIC FOOTWEAR:
Clarks has more than 22,000 style shoes that have sparked a revolution, defined a generation and captured the imagination. Like the iconic Clarks Desert Boot. Designed by Nathan Clark, launched in 1950, its appeal endures to this day. There’s Nature, a ground-breaking sports casual hybrid that made its debut in the late 1980s and, redefined and redesigned, has recently been reborn, And there’s Trigenic Flex, the crafted innovation that’s a modern classic in the making.